For months, Democrat Annie Andrews hasn’t publicly disclosed her personal finances as a South Carolina congressional candidate, just this week after the SC Republican Party filed a complaint against her with the House Ethics Committee.
Andrews, a pediatrician at the Medical University of South Carolina, is running against United States Republican Representative Nancy Mace in the 1st Coastal Congressional District, the richest in the state.
In his five sentence denunciation Emailed to the ethics panel on September 21, state GOP chairman Drew McKissick highlighted the fast approaching November 8 election and Andrews’ missing financial disclosure report.
“What is Democrat Annie Andrews hiding? It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to present these reports, but even if they are challenging, are they too complicated for a doctor?” McKissick told The Post and Courier after submitting the complaint.
“Either Andrews can’t figure out how to file them or ask for an extension, or he’s hiding something,” he added. “We’re not sure what the worst reason is.”
The Ethics in Government Act requires members of Congress and US House candidates, along with officials and some employees, to file annual financial statements. The document details personal investments, employment and secondary income, as well as debts, from mortgages to outstanding student loans.
It must be presented immediately after a candidate has raised or spent $ 5,000 in cash for the campaign, according to House ethics guidelines and federal law. Andrews participated in the Charleston run for Congress on November 8, 2021 and reported that he raised more than $ 200,000 in the first 24 hours of his campaign launch.
When asked about the missing report, Andrews’ campaign said it was an oversight and that they received “no communication or warning about this particular filing.”
“(We) only found out after bringing it to our attention,” said Bri Carpenter, Andrews’ campaign manager.
The financial reporting requirement for US House candidates is not new and deadlines and forms are publicly listed on the committee’s website, where it states: “The next annual financial disclosure statement will cover 2021 and must be filed. by May 16, 2022. ”
The standard fine for a late personal financial disclosure statement is $ 200, payable to the United States Treasury. Mace presented its financial disclosure report on May 16, the deadline.
In a statement, Carpenter said Andrews “immediately initiated the process of completing its full financial disclosure” after the newspaper inquired about it and said Andrews filed his report on September 22.
But in the same statement, Andrews’ campaign also criticized Mace for not paying the thousands he still owes the State Ethics Commission since serving in the SC legislature.
The fines, which now amount to $ 16,600 as of Sept. 12, are due to Mace arriving months late in filing various campaign reports for her SC House campaign account that she didn’t close.
“Considering Nancy Mace has been slapped in one fine after another by ethics officials for years of missing deadlines to file standard documents, it is quite comical that her cronies at the SCGOP now want to make this a problem for the campaign.” Carpenter said.
As part of The Post and Courier’s “Uncovered” investigation, the newspaper asked Mace about these unpaid fines in 2021, when Mace then faced a $ 5,100 fine that must be paid out of his own pocket and not with campaign money. At the time, his spokesperson said Mace would face the fine and close the account.
“It’s time for Nancy Mace to tell the people of South Carolina why she believes the rules should apply to everyone but her and why she chose to lie about paying her debts,” Carpenter said.
Mace’s campaign responded by characterizing the attack as an attempt to shift focus from Andrews’ mistake. The campaign also claimed they are facing pending fines and closing the Statehouse account. They did not directly indicate why the debt has not been addressed to date.
“There is no way to change the subject: Nancy Mace has never failed to disclose her personal finances, unlike her opponent who is hiding something. How much do taxpayers pay her to inject her policy into medical education in a children’s hospital. ? Taxpayers deserve to know, “said Austin McCubbin, Mace’s campaign manager.
A copy of the report, which was reviewed by The Post and Courier, shows Andrews earned a total of $ 221,200 which came from a $ 19,000 salary from MUSC and a $ 206,200 salary from University Medical Associates, the group of doctors of the MUSC.
The income earned by Mace lists his Congressional salary: $ 174,000.
It also shows that Andrews has a 30-year mortgage ranging from $ 250,001 to $ 500,000 on a “vacation home,” as well as a 30-year mortgage on his primary residence in Mount Pleasant.
The Charleston-anchored district encompasses much of the southernmost portion of the state’s coast, from Hilton Head Island to parts of downtown Charleston, along with portions of Berkeley, Dorchester, Colleton, and Jasper counties.
General elections are set for November 8th.